Catto Park bid not reliant on Balmoor deal with PFC

Aerial view of Balmoor and the adjacent Catto Park.
Aerial view of Balmoor and the adjacent Catto Park.

An agreement for Peterhead FC to purchase Balmoor stadium from Aberdeenshire Council is not a condition of negotiations over the Catto Park development proposal.

It had been reported a proposed sale of the 16-year-old ground would pave the way for progress in the multimillion-pound sports complex development.

However a senior club official stressed it had been the intention of the Peterhead FC board to purchase the land ever since the club moved from Recreation Park in 1997.

Furthermore, no final deal has yet been struck between councillors and club officials.

At a recent Buchan Area Committee meeting a report by the Director of Infrastructure Services was circulated.

The report detailed a proposal to transfer ownership of Balmoor Stadium to Peterhead Football Club Ltd. The club currently rent the facility from Aberdeenshire Council.

The agreement that was reachedby councillors at the meeting was to instruct officers to agree terms with the football club.

It was not a final agreement with the club.

The committee also agreed that any money raised by the sale would be ring-fenced for leisure facilities at Catto Park.

A spokesman for Aberdeenshire Council said: “There has been a lot of work and discussion on all sides to get to this point, but the council is happy to help community-minded organisations such as Peterhead Football Club who are keen to develop and grow for the benefit of the local area.

“There are some issues to be closed out before any disposal can be finalised, however officers will continue to work with the club to help it achieve its aims and deliver improved facilities to the local area in any way they can.”

It was also agreed at the meeting that the car park at the site is outwith the property which would be sold but that as the club would continue to use it, it would be requested maintenance costs be shared between the parties.

Peterhead FC moved into the now 4000-seat Balmoor Stadium in 1997 after their old ground - Recreation Park - was sold to Safeway. The site is now a Morrisons’s supermarket.

The quality of facilities at Balmoor was one of the main reasons why Peterhead were elected to the Scottish Football League in 2000.

Balmoor has hosted both Rangers and Celtic incompetive matches and girl-band The Saturdays for a concert.